SP-Glider with solo endorsement for non-LSA gliders

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SP-Glider with solo endorsement for non-LSA gliders

Postby Otto » Sat Nov 09, 2019 11:52 am

In the glider community it isn't uncommon to get a PP-Airplane(often lapsed) returning to aviation and while I haven't done this yet the easiest thing to get them on their way would be SP-Glider. Just need two CFIs. Instruction in most glider clubs is free, no cost easy add on rating. Many gliders do not qualify as LSA due to high VNE. Question; is there any reason we couldn't create a SP-Glider pilot in a LSA legal 2 seater then give them a standard solo endorsement for single seat(or two seaters, obviously no passenger flying with those obviously) gliders that are not LSA?
No medical is required, there are no passenger seats to fill. Not sure if the 10,000' limit would apply to a PP-Airplane pilot with SP-Glider that isn't a factor in most of the country. Ideally we want these guys to get higher ratings, however starting at the SP level is essentially free. I usually advocate for all the PP-Airplane to glider candidates to take the Commercial Glider written and jump straight to Commercial Glider. Not so they can immediately start doing rides but so years in the future there is one less barrier to becoming a CFI-G. A lot of pilots are intimidated by getting the Commercial first(PTS is almost the same.) A stop at SP, then jumping to Commercial makes sense to me and if they can fly non-LSA gliders as SP-Glider pilots with a standard solo endorsement practically they have no lesser privileges then passing a PP-Glider checkride.

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Re: SP-Glider with solo endorsement for non-LSA gliders

Postby 3Dreaming » Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:53 pm


Yes, you can take a non current pilot who is rated in a different category and do a sport pilot glider add on. This is also a way around the need to get a flight review in a aircraft which they are already rated before starting the process. I added my commercial glider 2 Summers ago. While I had a current flight review and could solo with a 61.39 endorsement I wanted to to do a sport pilot and sport CFI add on first. I wanted to be able to fly with my son. My reasoning was that There is no DPE in our area, and I was going to have to wait 6 months or travel to get a check ride. The 2 CFI's at the club were hesitant, and ask a DPE about it and he suggested not doing it. He was worried it might later effect my commercial ride with the FAA paperwork.

This past summer I added my glider CFI. When the examiner ask about your scenario of the non current pilot adding a glider rating he was expecting a no you can't do it. I explained the process to him.

Basically train the pilot in a glider that meets the CFR1.1 definition of a light sport aircraft (glider), just like you were preparing them to solo. Make sure they meet the standards as spelled out in the sport pilot glider PTS. Fill out a 8710-11. Have a second instructor do a proficiency check to make sure they are ready using the Sport Pilot PTS glider add on as a guide. Complete the paperwork and mail to the FAA. As soon as the paperwork is complete he is now a rated in gliders and you may perform a flight review. Once the flight review is complete they can now legally act as PIC to complete the requirements for private or commercial glider. If they want to fly something outside of the light sport aircraft limits you will need to make a 61.39 (a) endorsement for the particular aircraft.

There are several older 2 seat gliders that meet the CFR 1.1 definition of a light sport aircraft. 2-22, KA-7, and K-13 come to mind. There may be others. I did most of my training in our clubs K-13, but switched to Twin Astir for my check ride because weight with me and the examiner.

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